Title:
System and method for the installation of a prefabricated wall paneling system
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A paneling system for a home media center having prefabricated wall panel sections, prefabricated columns positioned at the joints between adjacent wall panel sections, and adjustable baseboard trim pieces. The wall panel sections can be positioned behind the columns at the joints in order to accommodate various room length dimensions. Cutout section profiles on the columns precisely match trim profiles of the wall panel sections when the wall panels are positioned behind the columns. The baseboard trim on the wall panel sections and on the columns is vertically adjustable by means of a screw and slot arrangement to accommodate height variations.



Inventors:
Leeman, Gary (Ackworth, GA, US)
Odom, William C. (Powder Springs, GA, US)
Application Number:
11/225374
Publication Date:
03/23/2006
Filing Date:
09/13/2005
Assignee:
The Room Shoppe (Powder Springs, GA, US)
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
52/311.1
International Classes:
E04B2/00
View Patent Images:
Related US Applications:



Primary Examiner:
BARTOSIK, ANTHONY N
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
MORRIS, MANNING & MARTIN, LLP (ATLANTA, GA, US)
Claims:
What is claimed:

1. A prefabricated wall paneling system, comprising: at least one prefabricated wall panel section, the prefabricated wall panel section comprising a predetermined length, a predetermined height, a top edge and a bottom edge; crown molding, wherein the crown molding is attached adjacent to the top edge of the prefabricated wall panel section; and a baseboard, the baseboard comprising the same predetermined length of the prefabricated wall panel section, wherein the baseboard is attached to the bottom edge of the prefabricated wall panel section, the baseboard being configured to be vertically adjusted in order to allow the height of the prefabricated wall panel section to be adjusted.

2. The prefabricated wall paneling system of claim 1, further comprising at least one junction column, wherein the junction column visibly covers the intersection or gap between two prefabricated wall panel sections that are situated in the same plane.

3. The prefabricated wall paneling system of claim 2, wherein the junction column comprises cutout sections positioned on opposing sides of the junction column, each cutout section matching the profile of the prefabricated wall panel section, and the crown molding and baseboard that is attached to each prefabricated wall paneling section, that is covered by the junction column.

4. The prefabricated wall paneling system of claim 3, wherein the prefabricated wall panel sections are inserted extending behind a respective cutout section of the junction column, the length of each prefabricated wall panel being visibly adjusted by the amount of prefabricated wall panel section that is inserted extending behind the junction column through a cutout section.

5. The prefabricated wall paneling system of claim 4, wherein the junction column comprises a baseboard, wherein the baseboard is attached to a bottom edge of the junction column, the baseboard being configured to be vertically adjusted in order to allow the height of the junction column to be adjusted.

6. The prefabricated wall paneling system of claim 5, wherein a prefabricated wall panel section further comprises a fabric insert panel.

7. The prefabricated wall paneling system of claim 5, wherein a prefabricated wall panel section further comprises at least one panel recess.

8. The prefabricated wall paneling system of claim 1, further comprising at least one corner column, wherein the corner column visibly covers the intersection or gap between two prefabricated wall panel sections that are situated perpendicular planes.

9. The prefabricated wall paneling system of claim 8, wherein the corner column comprises cutout sections positioned on opposing sides of the corner column, each cutout section matching the profile of the prefabricated wall panel section, and the crown molding and baseboard that is attached to each prefabricated wall paneling section, that is covered by the corner column.

10. The prefabricated wall paneling system of claim 9, wherein the prefabricated wall panel sections are inserted extending behind respective cutout sections of the corner column, the length of each prefabricated wall panel being visibly adjusted by the amount of prefabricated wall panel section that is inserted extending behind the corner column through a cutout section.

11. The prefabricated wall paneling system of claim 10, wherein a prefabricated wall panel section further comprises a fabric insert panel.

12. The prefabricated wall paneling system of claim 10, wherein a prefabricated wall panel section further comprises at least one panel recess.

13. A method for installing a prefabricated wall paneling system, the method comprising the steps of: overlaying at least one prefabricated wall panel section over at least one wall within a pre-existing room, wherein a prefabricated wall panel section comprises crown molding that is attached to a top edge of the prefabricated wall panel section, and a baseboard that is attached to a bottom edge of the prefabricated wall panel section; installing a junction column between two prefabricated wall panel sections that are situated in the same plane; installing a corner column between two prefabricated wall panel sections that are situated in perpendicular planes; and vertically adjusting a baseboard that is adjustably attached to a prefabricated wall panel section in order to allow the height of the prefabricated wall panel section to be adjusted.

14. The method of claim 13, wherein the junction column visibly covers the intersection or gap between two prefabricated wall panel sections that are situated in the same plane.

15. The method of claim 14, wherein the junction column comprises cutout sections on opposing sides of the junction column, each cutout section matching the profile of the prefabricated wall panel section, in addition to the crown molding and baseboard that are attached to each prefabricated wall paneling section that is covered by the junction column.

16. The method of claim 15, wherein the step of installing a junction column comprises inserting the prefabricated wall panel sections into the respective cutout sections of the junction column, the length of each prefabricated wall panel being visibly adjusted by the amount of prefabricated wall panel section that is extended behind the junction column.

17. The method of claim 16, wherein the junction column comprises a baseboard, the baseboard is attached to a bottom edge of the junction column, and the baseboard is configured to be vertically adjusted in order to allow the height of the junction column to be adjusted.

18. The method of claim 17, wherein the corner column visibly covers the intersection or gap between two prefabricated wall panel sections that are situated perpendicular planes.

19. The method of claim 18, wherein the corner column comprises cutout sections on opposing sides of the corner column, each cutout section matching the profile of the prefabricated wall panel section, in addition to the crown molding and baseboard that are attached to each prefabricated wall paneling section that is extended behind the corner column.

20. The method of claim 19, wherein the step of installing a corner column comprises inserting the prefabricated wall panel sections into the respective cutout sections of the corner column, the length of each prefabricated wall panel being visibly adjusted by the amount of prefabricated wall panel section that is covered by the corner column

21. The prefabricated wall paneling system of claim 20, wherein a prefabricated wall panel section further comprises a fabric insert panel.

22. The prefabricated wall paneling system of claim 20, wherein a prefabricated wall panel section further comprises at least one panel recess.

Description:

CROSS REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATION

This application claims the benefit under 35 U.S.C. § 119(e) of U.S. provisional patent application No. 60/609,908, entitled “PANELING SYSTEM,” filed Sep. 13, 2005, which is incorporated herein in its entirety by reference.

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

This invention relates to a paneling system for a home media center and more particularly relates to a paneling system that is prefabricated and easily installed and adjusted to accommodate the dimensions and variations in dimensions of a pre-existing room in which the paneling system is installed.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

In many circumstances, home media centers are installed in pre-existing rooms in a house. Such a home media center typically includes a large screen television or projection video screen, a sound system with multiple speakers, and the related wiring and accessories. In order to maximize the performance and aesthetics of such a home media center, consideration is usually given to providing a paneling system which is not only attractive, but which provides enhanced acoustic characteristics for the pre-existing room.

Where a home media center is installed in a pre-existing room in a house, the paneling system must accommodate the dimensions and the variation in the dimensions of the pre-existing room. Conventionally, a paneling system for a home media center is custom built on-site by skilled craftsmen who carefully measure and cut the various panels and trim pieces to fit the dimensions and to accommodate the variations in the dimensions of the pre-existing room. Such an installation of a paneling system for a home media center is time-consuming and therefore expensive.

SUMMARY

The paneling system of the present invention includes prefabricated wall panels and prefabricated columns positioned at the joints between adjacent wall panels. The wall panels and columns have crown and cap moldings that are precut and attached adjacent to the top edge of the wall panels and columns. The wall panels and columns also have baseboards that are adjustably attached adjacent to the lower edge of the wall panels and columns. The wall panels and columns are factory fabricated thereby assuring high-quality fit and finish. Particularly, the back edges of the baseboard on the columns are cut to precisely match the profile of the baseboard on the intersecting wall panels. The sides of the columns are likewise cut to precisely match the profiles of the crown and cap moldings on the intersecting wall panels. Consequently, the wall panels can slide behind the column in order to increase or decrease the space between adjacent wall panels and thereby accommodate rooms of varying dimensions.

In order to accommodate variations in the height of the walls of the pre-existing room, the baseboard on the wall panels and on the columns is vertically adjustable by means of a screw and slot arrangement.

Wall panels can be constructed in a variety of configurations to accommodate the various designs for the home media center. Particularly, a plain wall panel comprises a decorative peripheral frame and a fabric insert panel centered on the plain wall panel. The fabric insert panel is generally manufactured and installed in accordance with the teachings of U.S. Pat. Nos. 6,574,936 and 5,715,638, and accordance with pending U.S. patent application Ser. No. 10/201541, filed Jul. 23, 2002, entitled “SEAMED/SEAMLESS WALL PANEL SYSTEM” and pending U.S. patent application Ser. No. 10/798222, filed Jul. Mar. 11, 2004, entitled “SEAMED/SEAMLESS WALL PANEL SYSTEM.” Of course, other fabric insert panels and methods may be employed.

Another wall panel configuration may include various panel components. Such a component wall panel configuration may include a recess for a large screen television or projection video screen and associated recesses for speakers, shelves, drawers, or cabinets with doors for related components and hardware. The openings of the speaker recesses are covered with speaker cloth. A speaker cloth attachment assembly attaches the speaker cloth over the speaker recesses and includes a speaker cloth support frame. The speaker cloth support frame has a peripheral slot cut in its back side to receive a resilient bead that holds the speaker cloth in a stretched condition over the speaker cloth support frame. The speaker cloth support frame is then removably attached over the opening to the speaker recess by means of hook and loop fasteners.

The columns, which are installed at the intersections between the wall panels, include a sconce column and a corner column. The sconce column is used to cover any gap at the intersection between two adjacent wall panels mounted in the same plane along a wall of the room. The corner column is used to cover any gap at the intersection between two wall panels that meet at the corner of the room.

Therefore, it is an object of the present invention to provide a paneling system that is aesthetically pleasing and that enhances the acoustic characteristics of the home media center.

It is a further object of the present invention to provide a paneling system in which sconce columns and corner columns are used to accommodate and disguise variations in dimensions in the length of the walls of the pre-existing room.

It is also an object of the present invention to provide a paneling system in which the baseboard is vertically adjustable in order to accommodate variations in dimensions in the height of the walls of the pre-existing room.

It is an additional object of the present invention to provide fabric insert panels for the wall panels which are easily installed, removed, and replaced to vary and thereby tune the acoustical characteristics of the home media center.

Another object of the present invention is to provide wall panels with recesses for a television, speakers, shelves, and cabinets with doors to accommodate media equipment and components.

A further object of the present invention is to provide a speaker cloth attachment assembly for covering the openings of the speaker recesses which includes a speaker cloth support frame with a slot cut around its inside periphery to accommodate a resilient bead for attaching and stretching speaker cloth or other fabric over the opening of the speaker recess.

Further objects, features and advantages will become apparent upon consideration of the following detailed description of the invention when taken in conjunction with the drawing and the appended claims.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of three walls of a room having a component wall panel, two plain wall panels on adjacent walls, two sconce columns, and two corner columns all accordance with the present invention.

FIG. 2 is a perspective view of three walls of a room having a large plain wall panel flanked on one side by a small plain wall panel and flanked on the other side by a component wall panel (shelves), two sconce columns at the intersections between the wall panels, two large plain wall panels on adjacent walls, and one corner column.

FIG. 3 is a front elevation view of a component wall panel for mounting a large screen television or projection video screen with flanking corner columns.

FIG. 4 is a front elevation view of two large plain wall panels with a sconce column positioned at the junction between the two plain wall panels and with one flanking corner column.

FIG. 5 is a front elevation view of a large plain wall panel adjacent a door opening with a sconce column positioned at the junction between the door opening and the large plain wall panel, a small plain wall panel adjacent the door opening, and flanking corner columns.

FIG. 6 is a front elevation view of a large plain wall panel flanked on one side by a small plain wall panel and on the other side by a component wall panel (shelves), two sconce columns at the junction between the wall panels, and one corner column.

FIG. 7 is a detailed drawing showing sliding intersection between the crown in and cap molding on the wall panel and the side of the sconce column.

FIG. 8 is a detailed drawing showing the sliding intersection between the baseboard on the wall panel and the baseboard on the sconce column and showing how the baseboards are attached to the wall panel and sconce column in a sliding fashion to accommodate uneven floors and varying wall heights.

FIG. 9 is a front elevation view of a component wall panel for a large screen television or projection video screen with flanking speaker recesses.

FIG. 10 is a side elevation view of the component wall panel of FIG. 9 with details of the attachment of speaker cloth over the speaker recesses.

FIG. 11 is a further detailed drawing showing how the speaker cloth is attached to a speaker cloth support frame with a resilient bead and how the speaker cloth support frame is attached to the component wall panel using hook and loop fasteners.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

FIGS. 1-2 illustrate a pre-existing room 12 with a paneling system 10 in accordance with the present invention. The paneling system 10 includes two large plain wall panels 16, a component wall panel 18, two sconce columns 22, and two corner columns 24. FIG. 2 illustrates another paneling system configuration consisting of two large plain wall panels 16, a small plain wall panel 17, a bookshelf component wall panel 19, two sconce columns 22, and a corner column 24. A door opening at 21 is also shown in FIG. 2. The various components of the paneling system may be installed in any combination and configuration to meet the needs of the particular pre-existing room 12.

Turning to FIG. 3, the video screen component wall panel 18 for a large screen television or projection video screen consists of a video screen recess 32 for accommodating a large screen television or projection video screen. In addition, the video screen component wall panel 18 has speaker recesses 34 on either side of the video screen recess 32 to accommodate the speakers for the large screen television or projection video screen. In addition, recesses 35 extend along the lower portion of the video screen component wall panel 18. The recesses 35 may accommodate additional speakers, or the recesses 35 may have doors to accommodate other home media components or to provide additional storage.

The video screen component wall panel 18 has decorative crown molding 26 located above the video screen recess 32. Decorative cap molding 28 is installed above the speaker recesses 34. In addition, baseboard 30 is used to trim the lower portion of the video screen component wall panel 18. Corner columns 24 are located on each side of the video screen component wall panel 18 to cover any gap that might exist between the video screen component wall panel 18 and the wall panels 16 on the adjacent walls.

Turning to FIG. 4, two large wall panels 16 with sconce column 22 are illustrated. Each of the large wall panels 16 has a peripheral frame 15 into which is set a fabric insert panel 20. The peripheral frame 15 is typically made up of a wood-backing frame overlaid by decorative woods or veneers. Molding may be added to the peripheral frame 15 to enhance its overall decorative appearance. The fabric insert panels 20 are generally manufactured and assembled in accordance with the disclosures of U.S. Pat. Nos. 6,574,936 and 5,715,638, which are hereby incorporated by reference. In addition, the insert panels 20 may be manufactured and assembled in accordance with pending U.S. patent application Ser. No. 10/201541, filed Jul. 23, 2002, entitled “SEAMED/SEAMLESS WALL PANEL SYSTEM” and pending U.S. patent application Ser. No. 10/798222, filed July Mar. 11, 2004, entitled “SEAMED/SEAMLESS WALL PANEL SYSTEM,” which are hereby incorporated by reference. The fabric insert panels 20 provide a mechanism for varying the acoustic characteristics of the room 12 by changing the fabric or the underlying fill material of the fabric insert panels 20.

With continuing reference to FIG. 4, the two large wall panels 16 are located along the wall of the existing room 12. Where the two large wall panels 16 join near the center of the wall in FIG. 4, the sconce column 22 is installed to cover and to disguise any gap that exists at the joint between the two wall panels 16. Likewise in FIG. 5, the sconce column 22 covers any gap that exists at the joint between the large plain wall panel 16 and the door opening 21. Similarly, in FIG. 6, the sconce columns 22 cover any gap that exists at the joint between the small wall panel 17 and the large wall panel 16 as well as any gap that exists at the joint between the large wall panels 16 and the bookshelf component wall panel 19. Further, as shown in FIG. 1, the corner columns 24 cover any gaps that exist at the joints between the video screen component wall panel 18 and either of the large plain wall panels 16.

As previously explained, by covering any gaps at the joints between the wall panels, 16, 17, 18, and 19, with the sconce columns 22 and the corner columns 24, the gaps at the joints between the various wall panels can vary from tight abutment to a gap that is virtually the full width of the column. In that way, the paneling system 10 can accommodate rooms of different dimensions using standard dimensioned panels and without the necessity of cutting the panels. In order to vary the gap at the joint between adjacent panels, some provision must be made so that the trim on the wall panels including the crown molding 26, the cap molding 28, and the baseboard 30 form a precisely fitted joint where the column intersects the face of the panel.

Turning to FIGS. 7 and 8, the precisely fitted interface joint between sconce column 22 and the wall panel 16 for the crown molding 26, the cap molding 28, and the baseboard 30 is constructed so that the panel 16 slides behind the column 22. The crown molding 26 and the cap molding 28 on the wall panel 16 precisely engage a matching cutout profile on the side 25 of the sconce column 22. Similarly, the baseboard 30 of the wall panel 16 precisely engages a matching cutout profile on the baseboard 31 on the sconce column 22.

With reference to FIG. 7, the side 25 of the sconce column 22 is cut along a line 41 at the factory to precisely accommodate the profile of the cap molding 28, the crown molding 26, and the frame 45 of the wall panel 16. Similarly, as shown in FIG. 8, the baseboard 31 of the sconce column 22 is cut along a line 43 at the factory to precisely match the profile of the baseboard 30 of the wall panel 16. The precision cutting of the side 25 of the sconce column 22 and of the baseboard 31 of the sconce column 22 at the factory insures a precision fit between the cap molding 28 and the crown molding 26 of the wall panel 16 with the side 25 of the sconce column 22 and a precision fit between the baseboard molding 30 of the wall panel 16 with the baseboard 31 of the sconce column 22.

As previously stated, the paneling system of the present invention also accommodates uneven floors and wall heights by means of a vertically adjustable baseboard. As shown if FIG. 8, the baseboard 30 is attached to wall panel frame 45 of the wall panel 16 by means of screw and slot arrangement 40. Similarly, the baseboard 31 is attached to sconce column frame 47 of the sconce column 22 by means of the same screw and slot arrangement 40. The screw and slot arrangement 40 comprises a machine screw insert 44 embedded into each of the baseboards 30 and 31. The wall panel frame 45 and the sconce panel frame 47 each include a vertically cut baseboard slot 46. A machine screw 42 extends through the baseboard slot 46 and engages the machine screw insert 44 in each of the baseboards 30 and 31. Friction pads of felt or of other suitable materials may be installed between the baseboards 30 and 31 and the wall panel frame 45 and the sconce column frame 47 respectively. The felt pads provide a bearing surface which imparts consistent friction characteristics between the baseboards and the frames.

Prior to installation, the machine screws 42 are tightened to create friction between the baseboards 30 and 31 and the frames 45 and 47 that is sufficient to hold the baseboards 30 and 31 in place against small vertical forces applied to the baseboards 30 and 31. The friction, however, between the baseboards 30 and 31 and the frames 45 and 47 allows relative vertical movement between the baseboards 30 and 31 and the frames 45 and 47 when the installer exerts a vertical force on the baseboards 30 and 31. The vertical movement of the baseboards 30 and 31 with respect to the wall panel 16 and the sconce column 22 respectively allows the wall panel 16 and sconce column 22 to accommodate variations in the height of the walls of the pre-existing room.

FIG. 9 shows the large screen video component wall panel 18 with speaker recesses 34 on each side. FIG. 10 shows the same large screen video component wall panel 18 in side view with a detail of the speaker cloth attachment assembly 23. The speaker cloth attachment assembly 23 attaches the speaker cloth 52 or other fabric across the opening of the speaker recess 34. As more clearly shown in FIG. 11, the speaker cloth attachment assembly 23 consists of an external speaker recess molding 33 that forms a cloth support frame 39 (FIG. 9) that extends peripherally around the opening of the speaker recess 34. A slot 48 is cut in the back side of the speaker recess molding 33 of the cloth support frame 39. The speaker cloth 52 is stretched across the back side of the cloth support frame 39 and a resilient bead 50 is pressed into the slot 48 on top of the speaker cloth 52. As the resilient bead 50 is pressed into the slot 48 on top of the speaker cloth 52, the speaker cloth 52 is stretched across the dimension of the cloth support frame 39. Because of the resilient bead 50 is slightly larger than the slot 48, the resilient bead 50 holds the speaker cloth 52 securely within the slot 48 in a stretched condition. Once the speaker cloth 52 has been secured to the cloth support frame 39, the cloth support frame 39 is attached to the speaker recess frame 37 by means of a hook and loop fastener 54 as shown in FIG. 11. Consequently, the speaker cloth attachment assembly 23 allows easy assembly and replacement of the speaker cloth for the speaker recesses 34.

While this invention has been described with reference to preferred embodiments thereof, it is to be understood that variations and modifications can be affected within the spirit and scope of the invention as described herein and as described in the appended claims. One of ordinary skill in the art will also appreciate that the decorative trim may be varied in constructing both wall panels in accordance with the present invention. Such variations in decorative trim may be made two accommodate varying tastes and styles without departing from the present invention.